Three-dimensional mapping by CryoSat-2 of subglacial lake volume changes
Article first published online: 28 AUG 2013
©2013. American Geophysical Union. All Rights Reserved.
Geophysical Research Letters
Volume 40, Issue 16, pages 4321–4327, 28 August 2013
How to Cite
2013), Three-dimensional mapping by CryoSat-2 of subglacial lake volume changes, Geophys. Res. Lett., 40, 4321–4327, doi:10.1002/grl.50689., , , , , and (
- Issue published online: 16 SEP 2013
- Article first published online: 28 AUG 2013
- Accepted manuscript online: 23 JUN 2013 08:52PM EST
- Manuscript Revised: 20 JUN 2013
- Manuscript Accepted: 20 JUN 2013
- Manuscript Received: 13 MAY 2013
- radar altimetry;
- subglacial lake;
 We analyze data acquired by the CryoSat-2 interferometric radar altimeter and demonstrate its novel capability to track topographic features on the Antarctic Ice Sheet. We map the perimeter and depth of a 260 km2 surface depression above an Antarctic subglacial lake (SGL) and, in combination with Ice, Cloud and land Elevation Satellite laser altimetry, chart decadal changes in SGL volume. During 2007–2008, between 4.9 and 6.4 km3 of water drained from the SGL, and peak discharge exceeded 160 m3 s−1. The flood was twice as large as any previously recorded and equivalent to ~ 10% of the meltwater generated annually beneath the ice sheet. The ice surface has since uplifted at a rate of 5.6 ± 2.8 m yr−1. Our study demonstrates the ability of CryoSat-2 to provide detailed maps of ice sheet topography, its potential to accurately measure SGL drainage events, and the contribution it can make to understanding water flow beneath Antarctica.